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That Uncertain Feeling (1941)

Passed | | Comedy | 20 April 1941 (USA)
A psychoanalyst causes a woman to doubt her happy marriage.

Director:

Ernst Lubitsch

Writers:

Donald Ogden Stewart (screenplay), Walter Reisch (adaptation) | 2 more credits »
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Nominated for 1 Oscar. See more awards »

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Merle Oberon ... Jill Baker
Melvyn Douglas ... Larry Baker
Burgess Meredith ... Alexander Sebastian
Alan Mowbray ... Dr. Vengard
Olive Blakeney ... Margie
Harry Davenport ... Jones
Sig Ruman ... Kafka (as Sig Rumann)
Eve Arden ... Sally Aikens
Richard Carle ... The Butler
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Storyline

Against her better judgement, happily married Jill Baker is persuaded to see a popular psychoanalyst about her psychosomatic hiccups. Soon, she's disillusioned about husband Larry; and one day in the doctor's waiting room she meets pianist Alexander Sebastian, who's even more confused than she is. Can this marriage be saved? Larry has a plan that is pure Lubitsch... Written by Rod Crawford <puffinus@u.washington.edu>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

It's a serious problem for a lady with the hiccups, and he is it! See more »

Genres:

Comedy

Certificate:

Passed | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English | Hungarian

Release Date:

20 April 1941 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Ernst Lubitsch's That Uncertain Feeling See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (Western Electric Mirrophonic Recording)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Ernst Lubitsch and Sol Lesser had formed a partnership, Ernst Lubitsch Productions, Inc., but it was dissolved when this movie did poorly at the box office. See more »

Goofs

When Jill first goes to see Dr. Vangard, as he starts to sit down at his desk, his left hand is on the arm of the chair. In the next shot, still in the process of sitting down, his left hand is now up on his desk. See more »

Quotes

Jones: There's nothing wrong with your marriage. You just have to resell it once in awhile.
See more »

Connections

Featured in Hollywood Comedy Legends (2011) See more »

Soundtracks

The Happy Farmer (Opus 68 No.10)
(uncredited)
By Robert Schumann
See more »

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User Reviews

 
More like a Lubitsch tap than a Lubitsch touch
6 March 2016 | by calvinnmeSee all my reviews

It has some clever dialogue, but the plot you can see coming at you from a mile away, as it is a take on "the grass is greener". Plus there is only one really likable main character - Melvyn Douglas as Larry Baker.

After six years of marriage socialite Jill Baker is feeling quite bored. She is convinced by her equally bored Park Avenue socialite friends that she must simply go see Dr. Venguard, a psychoanalyst. Between Dr. Venguard, Jill's friends, and a complete narcissist she meets in Venguard's waiting room - Burgess Meredith as Sebastian, a pianist, she becomes convinced her marriage is on the rocks. This is all news to Larry who, although he does seem to eat and sleep the insurance business, is trying to build a better life for himself and his wife.

Before Larry knows what has happened, he is out and Jill wants to divorce him and marry the extremely tiresome Sebastian, whom she is convinced is a genius. He tells her so every day! Eve Arden as a legal secretary steals the show when she is asked about what is going on and her opinion. She says she sees it every day. Women taken care of in high style with no worries and nothing to think about but how unhappy they think that they are.

I wish I could make this review more inspiring, but the film itself is pleasant but uninspiring. No new ground is covered here, and the parts of it are greater than the whole. I can give kudos to Melvyn Douglas as the husband who thinks he is more clever at getting his wife back than he is, and to Burgess Meredith as somebody who thinks a great deal of himself as a musical genius but seems to have no visible means of support. Merle Oberon is lovely here and seems to have "that uncertain feeling" every step of the way. Events more than her own will seem to be propelling her forward in every instance.

A few great memorable lines, what could be heavy melodrama turned into a very light romantic comedy Lubitsch style, and probably worth your time if you run across it, but nothing to deliberately seek out.


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